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Press Release

Pride and Prejudice Voted America’s #4 Best-Loved Novel

OCTOBER 24, 2018—Pride and Prejudice, by English author Jane Austen (1775-1817), has been chosen as America’s #4 best-loved novel by participants in The Great American Read. The Top 5 novels and the first-place winner were revealed during the final episode of the eight-part PBS series, which aired October 23.

Over 4 million votes were cast between May 22 and October 18 as viewers voted for their favorite books from a list of 100 finalists determined by an earlier national survey. Jane Austen’s light, bright, and sparkling classic is in good company. The other books in the Top 5 include To Kill a Mockingbird, which took first place as America’s best-loved novel, as well as the Outlander series (second place), Harry Potter series (third place), and Lord of the Rings series (fifth place). 

Published in 1813, Pride and Prejudice is the oldest book in the top 60, but its timeless appeal ensures that it is never out of print, and its opening sentence is one of the most famous in English literature: “It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune, must be in want of a wife.” The novel continues to win the hearts of readers worldwide thanks to its lively, modern heroine, Elizabeth Bennet; unforgettable comic characters; witty dialog; and universal themes that still resonate with readers today: love, money, social mobility, and self-knowledge. 

Claire Bellanti, president of the Jane Austen Society of North America, said, “I am delighted that Pride and Prejudice has been chosen as one of America’s top five favorite novels. I hope the news will encourage those who have not yet read the book to discover its timeless and universal appeal!”

About The Jane Austen Society of North America

The Jane Austen Society of North Americais a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization founded in 1979 to foster the study, appreciation, and understanding of Jane Austen’s works, life and genius. JASNA has over 5,000 members and more than 78 regional groups in the United States and Canada. Membership in JASNA is open to everyone who shares an interest in Jane Austen; its members are of all ages and from diverse walks of life. For more information about JASNA, visit the Society’s website at www.jasna.org. 

About The Great American Read

The Great American Read, an eight-part PBS television and online series, explored and celebrated the power of reading, told through the prism of America's 100 best-loved novels.  Viewers were invited to read these books and vote for their favorites over the course of five months.  For more about The Great American Read, visit www.pbs.org/the-great-american-read/home/.   

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